National Football League warns Texas over "bathroom bill": No Super Bowl for you!

The NFL took a strong stand Friday against proposed legislation in Texas that would prevent transgender people from using public restrooms that match their gender identity, saying the bill could potentially keep the state from hosting future Super Bowls.

"If a proposal that is discriminatory or inconsistent with our values were to become law there, that would certainly be a factor considered when thinking about awarding future events", league spokesman Brian McCarthy told the AP.

As the debate swirls, organizations are bracing for the future in the event the bill becomes a law, including the NFL.

The comments, which come after Houston hosted Super Bowl LI on Sunday, appear to be the most critical by the league yet of legislation that has become a focal point in US culture wars.

"Sports and tourism folks in North Carolina say this has been devastating for them", Jessica Shortall of Texas Competes, a group that studies the economic health of the state, told Bontke about the HB2 bathroom bill. Forbes previously estimated the state of North Carolina lost more than $600 million in potential revenue in the six months after the bill was passed into law. The next opening is 2021 and Arlington, Texas, home to the Dallas Cowboys, is expected to be one of the bidders.

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The NCAA recently said it won't sanction its sports championships to be played in North Carolina through 2022 if the law isn't repealed. The NCAA has already made its feelings known for this kind of bill, and the Final Four is scheduled to be in San Antonio next year.

It was a major point of contention when the law passed in North Carolina previous year, ultimately forcing the National Basketball Association to move its 2017 All-Star Game to Louisiana.

"Despite persistent misinformation in the media, under Senate Bill 6, all Texas teams will be able to set their own policies at the stadiums and arenas where they play and hold their events", Patrick spokesman Alejandro Garcia said.

"I'm not a lawmaker, but I know the impression that that law has given other people of our state and that's the saddest thing in the world to me", Williams said at a press conference on Tuesday.

  • Regina Holmes